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US ready to deal with Venezuela’s “overreach” on Guyana

Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Hakeem Jeffries addressing the APNU_AFC Victory Rally in Brooklyn. He represents New York’s 8th Congressional district in Brooklyn and Queens.

Coverage made possible Fly Jamaica

A United States Congressman
, who represents New York areas densely populated by Guyanese, on Sunday signaled that his country stood ready to support Guyana against Venezuela’s ongoing territorial aggression in the wake of that Spanish-speaking country’s unilateral extension of its maritime boundary to include Guyanese waters.

Congressman Hakim Jeffries of the 8th District of New York told the gathering that he stood ready to support Guyana in the face of increased aggression by its Spanish-speaking western neighbour. “We are going to stand with Guyana and with its territorial integrity.”

“The work is not over, it’s just beginning and we know that we gonna have to stand with your country, stand with Guyana, stand with the government against all enemies- foreign and domestic and that means against the overreach that’s taking place by Venezuela,” Jeffries told thousands of Guyanese at an APNU-AFC Victory Rally in Brooklyn.

Guyana’s point-man on the oil industry, Raphael Trotman on Sunday sought to mobilize Guyanese against Venezuela.

apnu afcbrooklynTrotman, who is Minister of Governance and Patrimony, said the significant oil-find by American oil giant, ExxonMobil, offshore Guyana must be protected at all costs.

In that regard, he sought to whip up patriotic sentiments by urging them to be prepared to return home for battle against deal with Venezuela’s “latest charade.”

“Do I have your permission everyone to tell His Excellency (President David Granger) that you all are coming home to fight? Are you going to defend your country?

“We love you and we thank you. Stand strong for your country. Guyana needs you and let us demonstrate today, this afternoon from this Borough of Brooklyn all the way to Caracas, Venezuela that we are gathered by the thousands who will stand up for their country  and you did.

Before the rally, thousands of Guyanese clad in yellow and green marched through the streets of Brooklyn, spanning more than 20 blocks, to the rhythm of Dave Martin’s song, “Not a Blade of Grass” , a song that was composed decades ago to rally Guyanese against Venezuela’s claim to the mineral and forest-rich Essequibo region.

“The oil is ours, the land is ours, the mountains are ours, the waters are ours, the air is ours, it is ours and we will stand for it,” added Trotman.

The Guyana government has said that it would be asking the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon to make arrangements for the border controversy to be settled judicially in accordance with the United Nations Charter.

Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro on May 27, 2015 issued Decree 1787 declaring that the waters off the Essequibo Coast were now part of a maritime security zone.

Guyana has rejected that Decree, saying that it was illegal and amounted to a threat to regional peace and security.